Possible Elective Course: Arab Literary Travels

We’d like to invite students to add this very timely course when registration opens again in January.

Arab Literary Travels
34522 E    324
32884 C L  323
41084 MES  342
46077 WGS  340

TTH     11:00AM –  12:30PM   PAR  302

Carries Global Cultures Flag.

This course introduces students to modern Arabic and Arab-Anglophone literature through
vocabularies of travel: exile, estrangement, study abroad, immigration, diaspora, return,
displacement, and dispossession.

In class, students will balance artistic production influenced by travel with the real conditions ofpoverty, loss, and violence that impact contemporary immigrants and refugees. In the twentiethand twenty-first centuries, literature has emerged from Palestinian dispossession in 1948 and1967, oil compound development in the Gulf, the Lebanese Civil War, decolonization efforts in North Africa and the Middle East, and, more recently, continued refugee crises in Syria, Iraq, and Palestine.

This same period has produced thinkers and artists like Edward Said, Leila Ahmed,
Mahmoud Darwish, and Miral al-Tahawi, all of whom understand movement, travel, and even exile or estrangement to be essential components of their creative endeavors. As students explore texts from these authors and events, they will learn to focus particularly on the class, gender, and ethnic disparities that inform different narratives’ relationship to travel.

We’ll use the travel narrative framework to explore Arabic literature’s encounter with foreign spaces and literatures, including those colored by colonial legacies and histories of conflict. Ultimately, students in this class will discover a breadth of modern Arabic literature while learning to situate that literature in a global context that considers critically the types of movement bringing people, places, and ideas into contact.

“Exile is strangely compelling to think about but terrible to experience”
Edward Said, “Reflections on Exile”